Booster seats in Florida

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ada

New member
Hi! We are heading down to WDW in about 10 days. Can any local Florida folks tell me what the law is on booster seats? Where I live, kids have to be in booster seats by law until 8 and then it is up to the parents. I know it differs by state.

When I googled it, it quoted a fine and points for a child under 5 years of age not being in a car seat. However, there were only "guidelines" for children over 5 years of age. I'm assuming a "guideline" is a strong recommendation rather than a law for which we can get fined.

I don't want to sound like a terrible parent, but my youngest is 7, almost 8. She rides in a car seat up here, but in my opinion, it wouldn't be worth bringing a booster seat on the plane to put it into our rental car. My husband is very anti-checking luggage, so we have to use our carry-on allocation wisely!!

So, I'm looking for the actual you'll-get-in-trouble-law rather than this-is-what-we-think-you-should-do-guideline.

Thanks!
 

jess98ac

Member
My daughter was 5 on our last trip, so we had to use a booster for her. Rather than bringing her booster or renting, we bought a Bubble Bum seat. It's an inflatable booster, and it folds up fairly small, we were able to put it in a carry on.
 

daleNchip

New member
FWIW, those backless boosters fit just fine under the seat in front of you or in the overhead and *most* (if not all) airlines do not count boosters against you in carry-on allowance.

I'm out of the booster seat market, but that Bubble Bum seat intrigues me.

mk
 

ada

New member
Thanks for all of the replies!

I'm very close to being done with boosters, but that Bubble Bum seat would be pretty cool if I still needed one.

Wow, sounds like Florida is a bit lax, but, hey, works for me!
 

jess98ac

Member
It was well worth it for us. We have a 2 year old, so even when the 5 year old is done, we'll still have a use for it. Also, it's great if she's with someone other than us who doesn't have a seat for her in their car!
 

Jessmela

New member
I used the Bubble Bum with my DD on our last trip for cab rides. It was inexpensive, not heavy at all, and wasn't too bulky to fit into our carry on luggage. It was just the two of us, so I couldn't see hauling her car seat around for the 2 trips we needed it for (staying offsite the first night). I was still a bit nervous honestly, but it was sooo much more convenient.
 

meremac

New member
My husband is very anti-checking luggage, so we have to use our carry-on allocation wisely!!

Thanks!
Is he anti-checking luggage because of the cost or the convenience? If it's because of the cost, most airlines do not charge you to check booster seats or carseats.
 

ada

New member
convenience...we are flying SWA, so we can check for free. He's an engineer, travels alot for his work and has long ago streamlined the airport-rental car desk-destination journey. Sometimes, it's just best to give in on these things...

She's going to be 8 in 3 months and honestly, I don't want the hassle of a booster seat if it's not against the law in Florida.
 

hljoyce

New member
convenience...we are flying SWA, so we can check for free. He's an engineer, travels alot for his work and has long ago streamlined the airport-rental car desk-destination journey. Sometimes, it's just best to give in on these things...

She's going to be 8 in 3 months and honestly, I don't want the hassle of a booster seat if it's not against the law in Florida.
I personally would prioritize my kids' safety over anyone's desire to not be inconvenienced.
 

pfalcioni

does anybody know how to change this?
I personally would prioritize my kids' safety over anyone's desire to not be inconvenienced.
They're not talking safety, they are talking what is allowable by law. As shown, many states are more stringent with requirements, others are less so. It's obviously up to parents to decide from that point whether an 8-year-old is safer in a booster seat or regular restraint system. If you choose to use a booster, helmet, and flame retardant suit until your kid is away at college, more power to 'ya, but I don't think this is a really terrific place to argue who is a safer and better parent, do you?
 

daleNchip

New member
convenience...we are flying SWA, so we can check for free. He's an engineer, travels alot for his work and has long ago streamlined the airport-rental car desk-destination journey. Sometimes, it's just best to give in on these things...
I am a frequent business traveler myself. As a good friend who is also a frequent flier says, "There are two kinds of luggage: carry-on and lost."

mk
 

paxsarah

Active member
Even the American Academy of Pediatrics---a somewhat conservative set of folks when it comes to kids safety---suggests that 8 is a perfectly fine age at which to consider a regular seatbelt, depending on height.

http://www.healthychildren.org/English/safety-prevention/on-the-go/pages/Car-Safety-Seats-Information-for-Families.aspx

Actually, they do cite some additional criteria (though it's buried deep in that page) that are usually included as part of the 5-step test for parents to check if kids are ready for seatbelt-only sitting:

  1. An adult seat belt fits correctly when:
    • The shoulder belt lies across the middle of the chest and shoulder, not the neck or throat.
    • The lap belt is low and snug across the upper thighs, not the belly.
    • Your child is tall enough to sit against the vehicle seat back with her knees bent without slouching and can stay in this position comfortably throughout the trip.
Very few kids can meet all of those criteria at age 8, and they rarely are 4'9" at age 8, either (the height mentioned on that page as being ready for a seatbelt alone). I'm not commenting on anyone's choices, but I also wanted to point out that the AAP page does not actually say that 8 is perfectly fine (in that I'm pretty sure 4'9" is pretty much off the charts for an 8yo).


 

pfalcioni

does anybody know how to change this?
An adult seat belt fits correctly when:

  • The shoulder belt lies across the middle of the chest and shoulder, not the neck or throat.
Well shoot, according to this, I need a booster seat. We only have one vehicle that has seat belts that don't sit on my collarbone and creep towards my neck.
 

Thaddeushinny

New member
User has been warned, and link deleted.
FWIW, those backless boosters fit just fine under the seat in front of you or in the overhead and *most* (if not all) airlines do not count boosters against you in carry-on allowance.

I'm out of the booster seat market, but that Bubble Bum seat intrigues me.

mk
It seems that you have some good knowledge about booster seats. I know you're out of the market but which one did you use? Can you recommend it? Sorry for being off topic.
I wouldn't have imagined that getting a car seat will take up weeks of my time. There are so many to choose from with all different specs. For weeks now I'm on the hunt. The amazon reviews are so polarizing some say that the car seat is not good and dangerous while other say it's the safest thing ever. Then I tried looking for blog reviews. Those are pure pitch fests and never mention any drawbacks. As my last attempt i was looking for best articles. Finally I've came across a blog that seems to actually try and test car seats. I've read this *DELETED LINK* best booster seats post which one of those seats would you recommend?

I'm open for suggestions.
 
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bnoble

he's right
I'm pretty sure that poster is no longer active here at EasyWDW. I'm also pretty sure that the child they were buying for is now in high school, if not college. ;-)

If I were in the market for a child safety seat*, I'd use Consumer Reports' ratings:

If you are non a member, the $10 will be well worth it for one month's worth of access.

*: Those days are long behind me.
 
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